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Has anyone run a marathon on Gatorade Endurance alone?

asked over 4 years ago | Report

So I'm trying to figure out my plan of action regarding fueling for my first marathon. I'm experimenting with gels, but they give me heartburn. Gatorade Endurance Formula is provided along the marathon course. Has anyone run just using Gatorade endurance without gels? I've run several half marathons while drinking Gatorade endurance and water, and it seemed to sit well in my stomach. Thanks for your advice.

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  • It's possible, but the real answer depends on your body.

    Generally speaking, the nutritional research I follow says that you need about 50-60g of exogenous carbs (stuff you eat/drink) per hour in a marathon. With a dilution of about 14g of carbs for every 8oz of drink, that's about 32oz of Gatorade per hour.

    I looked at your log and your last run of 18m took you 03:46:00. I don't know what your goal pace for the race is, but it seems safe to say that you're going to be out there for 4.5 hours. That means you'll need to drink about 128oz throughout the course of the race!

    Of course, this number comes from just doing some scientific math and not from feedback you've personally gotten from your body. The only way to know for sure if it'll work for you and how much you need to pull it off is best found by experimenting during your long runs. You can order the Endurance formula online. Get some, mix it up and try.

    Personally speaking, I'd probably puke if I had to drink that much sports drink. I think you'd be better off continuing to experiment with gels or other edible energy sources. There are an endless variety, or you can even make your own. Google for some recipes.

    Good luck.

    answered over 4 years ago |edited over 4 years ago |Report

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  • I agree that if you are exercising at a pretty hard pace for 3-4 hours you will need some sort of "real" food, and not just gatorade. 128 oz of gatorade would actually flush too many important minrals out of your system and cause the opposite of dehydration. Plus you'd be stopping at the WC too often.

    I would experiment with various powerbars, gels, PBJ's or some food that you can carry with you. I eat every hour or else I bonk. Liguids, even a gel an hour won't do it.

    answered over 4 years ago |Report

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  • Gatorade admits that it cannot prevent your electrolytes from becoming too diluted (Hyponatremia) if you drink too much. However, when compared to the regular Gatorade mix, the Endurance formula does have 2x the amount of salt and other minerals (potassium, I think) which may help hold it off.

    But, yeah... in general... that's a hell of a lot of fluid. I even went back to double check my math and it's spot on with the sports nutrition book I have.

    Drink up!

    answered over 4 years ago |edited over 4 years ago |Report

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  • Have you tried the plain plain gu, non caffienated, non nothing just plain? that may cause a lot less heartburn.

    back in the day people did run marathons on water, plain old gatorade and things like pretzels and oranges....you could try some actual real food and see if that sits better.

    answered over 4 years ago |Report

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  • +1 for real food! I make my own sports drinks. It's awesome AND healthy.

    answered over 4 years ago |Report

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